Skinny Eggplant Parmesan

May 5, 2013

Skinny Eggplant Parmesan

Oh hell yes this was good. Much much better than anticipated.
As with many popular dishes there are many bad ways to make eggplant parmesan (aka, eggplant Parmigiana). In a run-of-the-mill Italian restaurant or in almost every pizza parlor across the country if you order eggplant parmigiana you’ll get mushy slices of soggy, oily eggplant, slathered with greasy cheese and covered with a dubious tomato sauce.
Ok, this is the worst version possible. Besides that, there are many things where eggplant parmesan can go wrong.
This begs a question: if this get ruined so often why it is so popular? Because when it’s good, it’s awesomely good. Mouth watering good. That’s why it’s worth making.

Right out of the oven

This dish is called “Parmesan” for a reason; in that the cheese should be Parmesan cheese, real Parmesan cheese. Nowadays instead any casserole or sandwich containing Mozzarella cheese gets labeled as “Parmesan” or “Parmigiana”. Whether it actually contains real Parmesan cheese becomes secondary.

Eggplant Parmesan in the making

Everybody has their own take to eggplant parmesan. Mine is a skinnier version. Easy on calories, gluten-free, grain-free and low fat.
How to achieve this? First off there’s no breading or frying the eggplant. Baking works just as well, maybe even better.
Furthermore, we use only Parmesan adequate amount of Parmesan cheese.
No mozzarella involved. What? Wait. What, what? No mozzarella? Yes, no mozzarella. You won’t regret it, I promise.
I found an old Italian recipe that subs mozzarella with beaten eggs. I tried it, and it works so well. Unbelievable.
Don’t turn up your nose at this. Trust me, it’s delicious.
Too spike flavors we’re making an awesomely tasting tomato sauce to bind the everything together.
And it’s going to be easy. Believe.
All in all an outstanding meal, with less than 300 calories per serving. Our way to return eggplant parmesan to its glory. Well played!

Skinny Eggplan Parmesan

Skinny Eggplant Parmesan                                                                                                         Print this recipe!
Adapted from Molto Italiano: 327 Simple Italian Recipes to Cook at Home

Makes 4 generous servings

3 medium eggplants
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 29 oz / 820 gr can diced tomato
1 cup / 1.8 oz / 50 gr Parmesan cheese, grated
2 free-range eggs, beaten
1 medium onion, chopped
1 + 1 tablespoons olive oil
handful of fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
1 +1 teaspoons fine grain sea salt
black ground pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C) and place a rack in the middle. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and lightly grease with some olive oil. Set aside.
Fill a large bowl with cold water, add 1 teaspoon of salt and stir until it dissolves completely.
Wash thoroughly the eggplants, slice them into ¼-inch rounds and place them into the bowl of water. Let the eggplant rounds sit for at least 20 minutes to draw out the bitterness.
In the meantime make the tomato sauce. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add onion and garlic and saute’ for 5 minutes, until onion begins to golden. Add diced tomatoes, 1 teaspoon of salt, basil, reduce the heat to low and let simmer for 15 minutes. Turn the heat off and set aside.
Fish the eggplant slices out of the water and arrange them on a single layer on prepared baking sheets. Bake in the oven for 12 to 15 minutes until the slices begin turning deep brown on top.
Remove the slices from the baking sheets and place them on a plate to cool.
Lightly grease with 1 tablespoon of olive oil the bottom and sides of an 8 by 12-inch baking pan (a brownie pan works perfectly).
Cover the bottom of the baking dish with some tomato sauce and arrange eggplant slices on top to form a uniform layer. Cover the eggplant with some tomato sauce, some Parmesan cheese and top with 2 tablespoons of beaten eggs . Repeat to make 3 layers, making sure to end with a uniform layer of tomato sauce and top with the remaining Parmesan cheese.
Bake in the oven for about 40 minutes until hot and beginning to brown. Let rest at room temperature for 10 minutes before serving.This dish is just as good (maybe even better) the day after, reheat in the microwave for a couple of minutes and enjoy warm.

Nutrition facts

One serving yields 285.5 calories, 13.4 grams of fat, 28 grams of carbs and 16.5 grams of protein.


  1. I want some, right now!

  2. i always loved eggplant parm before i started the paleo diet. i used to make a lot of vegan parmesan with the soy/rice cheeses, but now i eat real cheese again. i'll have to make this. looks really delicious and i prefer my eggplant slices super thin.

  3. I made this last night: awesome! I didn't miss the mozzarella at all. To the contrary, it was so much tastier and so light.
    Thanks for sharing another amazing recipe Mike!

  4. why do you not have the sodium content

  5. Stumbled on this post today.... I always bake my eggplant for parmigiana, but yes, I am guilty of the mozzarella cheese in high amounts.

    I am pinning your version to try.... love me a skinny anything! ;-)

    1. Try my version once, you'll be surprised how yummy it is and you won't miss the mozzarella, at all!

    2. Just out of the oven.... looks great! I am now going to let it cool, since it looks like molten lava :-)

      smells terrific - if my photos do it justice, I'll blog about it and of course give you all the credit!

  6. Made this last night and you were right - I didn't miss the mozzarella at all!!!! I had to add Italian seasoning to my sauce to give it a bit more flavor. I also pureed it because the sauce was a bit chunky and my stepson claims he doesn't like onions, even though most everything I make has onion in it! This was a great way to mask them! I was also confused because you said to slice the eggplant lengthwise, but then in the next sentence you said to place the eggplant rounds into the bowl of water. So I wasn't sure how to cut them, so I sliced them into rounds. It didn't matter - still tasted great!

  7. Tried this last night and followed the recipe word for word. Absolutely bangin. Paired it up with a 2009 Sangiovese and that just rounded it all out. Cheers!

    1. Hey Richie, thank you so much for taking the time to leave such an awesome feedback (with picture). I'm so glad you enjoyed the recipe and that 2009 Sangiovese sounds like the perfect pairing for this dish. Cheers!

  8. Made this to put a dent in my eggplant glut. Fabulous, and much more in the style of eggplant al forno dishes I've enjoyed in Italy. Thanks!